There are ten medications you should never mix with coffee

Ten medications you should never mix with coffee

If you're like most Americans, you start your day with a steaming cup of coffee, and you head to the bathroom shortly after. This is a common effect of caffeine.

Studies show that coffee may stimulate your stomach, changing the time it takes for food to reach your digestive system. However, your morning cup of coffee can also interact with your medications and change how quickly they are absorbed into your bloodstream.

This means that drinking coffee at the same time you take your medication could affect how well it works for you. In 2020, a group of researchers reviewed several medications and how coffee affected them. They stated that coffee "significantly affects the absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of many drugs."

However, not all medications are affected by drinking coffee. Read on to determine which medications should not be mixed with coffee and what to look for.

Thyroid medicine

If you have hypothyroidism, your thyroid gland -- a butterfly-shaped gland in the front of your neck -- doesn't produce enough thyroid hormone. This can cause weight gain, dry skin, joint pain, hair loss, and irregular periods.

Many people are prescribed levothyroxine or other thyroid medications to help balance their hormones. Studies show that drinking coffee at the same time you take thyroid medication can decrease the amount of medication your body absorbs, making the medication less effective for you. And this is no small effect: Patient case reports indicate that coffee can reduce the absorption of thyroid medication by more than half.

Cold or allergy medicine

Millions of people use medicines for colds or allergies, often containing central nervous system stimulants such as pseudoephedrine. Coffee is also a stimulant, so washing coffee allergies away may increase symptoms such as insomnia and the inability to sleep.

Certain allergy medications, such as fexofenadine, should not be taken with coffee because it may overstimulate the central nervous system, worsening symptoms of insomnia. It's always a good idea to ask your healthcare provider for advice on combining coffee and cold or allergy medicine.

Diabetes medications

Mixing your coffee with sugar or milk can spike your blood sugar and affect how well your diabetes medication works. Additionally, studies show that caffeine may exacerbate symptoms in people with diabetes.

A study published by the American Diabetes Association shows that drinking anything that contains caffeine, such as coffee, can raise insulin and blood sugar levels. The study was small, so more research is needed, but the researchers caution that drinking a lot of caffeine may make it more difficult to manage your blood sugar and, ultimately, increase your risk of diabetes complications.

Diabetes and prediabetes are common in the United States and other Western countries. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 37 million Americans have diabetes, and nearly 100 million have prediabetes. Most people don't know they have it. With these numbers, it is not surprising that millions of people take diabetes medication daily.

Alzheimer's medicine

Alzheimer's disease is the seventh leading cause of death in America and mostly affects people over 65. It is a brain disorder that leads to a loss of cognitive function, making it difficult to think, remember, or do your daily tasks. Tasks. Millions of Americans live with Alzheimer's and take medication for the condition.

Alzheimer's medication, such as donepezil, rivastigmine, and galantamine, is affected by caffeine. The caffeine in coffee tightens the blood-brain barrier and can reduce the amount of medication that reaches your brain. Alzheimer's drugs protect the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, and drinking large amounts of coffee has been shown to weaken this protective effect.

Asthma medications

Asthma is a chronic disease affecting your lungs, inflamed and irritated airways. This results in difficulty breathing, coughing and wheezing, and tightness in your chest. Millions of Americans, both adults and children have asthma and take medications to treat it.

Many people with asthma take bronchodilators such as aminophylline or theophylline during an attack. Bronchodilators work by relaxing the airways, making breathing easier, but they come with side effects like headaches, insomnia, stomach pain, and irritability. Drinking coffee or other beverages high in caffeine can increase your risk of these side effects. Coffee can also reduce the amount of medicine absorbed by the body and benefit your body.

Osteoporosis medication

Osteoporosis makes your bones thin and brittle, which increases your risk of bone fractures. Millions of people have osteoporosis, which is more common in women, especially women who have already gone through menopause.

Drugs such as risedronate or ibandronate prevent and treat osteoporosis and should not be taken simultaneously with coffee because they make the medication less effective. It is recommended to take these medicines before eating or drinking anything and wash down the pill with plain water. This will allow your body to make up the full amount of the medication. When you drink coffee with these medications, their effectiveness can be reduced by more than half.


According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 10 teens and adults take antidepressant medication daily. It is the most prescribed drug for adults in their 20s and 30s, and its use has increased dramatically over the past few decades. They can help with depression, a mood disorder affecting your feelings and function.

Coffee can affect how your body uses antidepressant medication. Some medications, such as fluvoxamine, amitriptyline, escitalopram, and imipramine, can be metabolized differently if you drink coffee simultaneously, especially large amounts of coffee. Coffee can decrease the amount of medicine your body absorbs.

Studies show that fluvoxamine, in particular, has been found to enhance the usual side effects of caffeine. This can cause symptoms such as insomnia and heart palpitations. It is better to take your medications and stop drinking coffee for a while.

Antipsychotic medicine

Antipsychotic medications are helpful for people with schizophrenia, mania, major depressive disorder, and other mental health problems. Nearly four million Americans use these medications each year—antipsychotic medications work by blocking certain neurotransmitters or receptors in the brain.

Medications that treat psychosis include phenothiazines, clozapine, haloperidol, and olanzapine. Coffee can cause your body to absorb fewer of these medications than it normally would if you wait a while to enjoy your morning cup. Studies show that many of these medications are metabolized or broken down by the body differently in coffee. To get the full effect of your medication, take it with water instead of coffee.

Hypertension medicine

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), tens of millions of Americans suffer from hypertension — high blood pressure — and it's not well controlled for many. High blood pressure increases the risk of heart disease and stroke. It is a common but silent disease that rarely presents with symptoms.

Many people take blood pressure medications, such as verapamil or propranolol, which slow the heart rate. This means that your heart doesn't have to work as hard to pump blood to all the cells in your body.

However, drinking coffee at the same time you take blood pressure medications such as felodipine can cause your body to absorb less of the medication. You may not get the full benefit from the medicine. Talk with your healthcare provider about scheduling your morning cereal and cup.


Melatonin is a natural hormone made by your body that helps you feel sleepy at night. The hormone is triggered by the setting sun, which signals to your brain that it's time to rest. Melatonin is also sold over the counter (OTC) in supplement form and used as a sleep aid.

By contrast, coffee is a stimulant, making you feel more awake. The caffeine in coffee does the exact opposite function of what melatonin does. It can make you more alert and make it difficult to fall asleep. Drinking coffee can suppress melatonin production in your body and make the hormone less effective. If you take melatonin at the same time as you drink coffee, they can cancel each other out.

If you take any of these medications, especially if they are recommended to take them first thing in the morning, try delaying your first cup of coffee.

Talk to your healthcare provider about balancing cereal and coffee if you take multiple medications. If you're experiencing any unpleasant side effects, such as restlessness, jitters, or restlessness, your healthcare provider can help you find a solution.

Coffee is considered a stimulant due to its high caffeine content. Between its stimulant effects and its effects on the digestive system, coffee can change how your body breaks down and absorbs your medications. You may need to change the timing of your coffee break, but if you're experiencing any symptoms, it's always a good idea to contact your healthcare provider.

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